In high school, I had grown into a size 38DD bra and it wasn’t easy, especially since I was so active. I played on two volleyball teams and took multiple weekly dance classes. Options were limited – I’d layer regular bras under compression sports bras or leotards with built in bralettes, but that didn’t help much with bounce.
My chest size also made it hard to get dressed. I used to struggle with sweaters as the heavy fabric made me look lumpy. On the flip side, skimpier pieces were equally as tricky since I didn’t want thick straps showing. And then I discovered the power of a minimizing bra. A good minimizer will comfortably compress your chest and can take inches off the bust line. They create a smooth silhouette, so your clothes will fit correctly.
It took lots of trial and error but my favorite minimizer turned out to be a non-padded, underwire bra. I’ve worn it for years and sadly it’s no longer available, so I set out to find others that could fill the void. Scroll through to see my top picks, whether you want something sexy, simple, or sporty.
The Sexy One
This is the closest I’ve found to my favorite minimizer. Reviewers praised it for it’s full coverage design and soft material. It’s stretchy but also offers enough compression to do its job. One satisfied customer wrote, “What I look for in a minimizer bra is support, shaping, and comfort with prettiness being a plus. This bra has enough of all of the above to make me happy.”
A Sleek T-Shirt Bra
A Supportive Sports Bra
Long gone are the days of doubling or tripling up on bras for your workout. This sports bra has an extra mesh panel with adjustable straps for bounce control. Customers love it for it’s compression and coverage, even in compromising positions. Said one reviewer, “When you’re bent over in a yoga pose, or planking, you won’t feel like the whole world can see down your shirt.”
The Comfy One
If You Want Lots of Compression
Want something that really flattens? Try this sports bra-style binding bra. One shopper said her 36DDD chest resembled a C or D cup with this on while others mentioned that they purchased this to complement their tomboy wardrobe or to flatten out chests for those who have not had top surgery.
The Best Strapless
For busty women, strapless bras have long been the enemy. Thankfully, this one works – reviewers noted true that it lifts, supports, smooths and minimizes your bust line up to 1.5 inches. It even comes with removable straps that adjust any way you please.
An Option That Clasps in the Front
According to reviews, this lacy T strap is a favorite for fuller figures. One shopper asks, “Struggle to find an awesome T strap that supports, or a front close without quad boob or spillage? Wanna avoid lumps in the back? Welcome to the bra that solves all your problems. It might even fix your credit and make your boyfriend better looking.” Sounds like a winner.
If You Hate Padding
For underwire fans who hate excessive fabric, this semi-sheer minimizer is perfect. The wider straps provide extra support, while the cups offer firm support. Plus, it looks pretty – “This is a nice change from the ‘usual’ 38D bra” comments one customer.
If you buy something through our links, New York may earn an affiliate commission.